President Thaçi meets US Senator Joni Ernst: The closer Kosovo is to NATO and EU, the less it will be threatened by violent extremism

Prishtina, July 1st, 2016 – President of the Republic of Kosovo, Hashim Thaçi met today with the US Senator from the state of Iowa, Joni Ernst.

During the meeting, President Thaçi expressed gratitude for the outstanding support of the US and the state of Iowa to Kosovo, recalling that the country’s friendship with Iowa is older than the state of Kosovo.

“Kosovo’s friendship with the state if Iowa had started with Iowa National Guard soldiers who participated within the peacekeeping troops in Kosovo since 2003. Our cooperation expanded rapidly in other areas as well”, President Thaçi said.

He stressed that, despite its challenges that loom ahead, Kosovo continues to consolidate itself as a state, both internally and externally.

“We remain steadfast in our commitment to strengthen democracy and governance at all levels. We are on the right path in meeting our duties and obligations”, President Thaçi said.

The head of state said that Kosovo is conducting a comprehensive dialogue for the establishment of the Armed Forces of Kosovo and that the country intends to become part of the Partnership for Peace programme, as a precondition for NATO membership.

President Thaçi stressed that thanks to legislation drafted and adopted in Parliament but also due to the information and education of the public through awareness raising campaigns, there has been no case of Kosovans joining foreign wars in the past ten months, adding nonetheless that, like all other countries, Kosovo is not immune to the global threat of violent extremism.

On the other hand, US Senator Joni Enrst said that it was a pleasure for her to meet President Thaçi at the recently opened Consulate of Kosovo in Iowa, adding that she has been committed to fostering cooperation between Kosovo and Iowa ever since Kosovo had sent the first soldiers in this state. Senator Ernst said that she would personally engage with regard to Kosovo’s aspirations to become a member of the main international organizations in the field of security.

She said she hopes that the cooperation and friendship between Kosovo and Iowa shall deepen even further to mutual benefit.

President of the Republic of Kosovo, Hashim Thaçi said that the closer Kosovo is to NATO and the EU, the less it will be threatened by violent extremism.